Friday Five – Best things about Disneyland Half Marathon

Oh boy.  This is a hard but awesome post to do.

I have run the Disneyland Half Marathon twice.  PR’d in it twice.  Proof you can indeed PR at a Disney race–so folks, don’t be afraid–it can totally be done.  But I digress…that is for another post.

me and my bling

Double PR at the Dumbo Double Dare

Today’s post is dedicated to the five things I love about Disneyland’s Half Marathon…and well, the weekend overall.  It was my first runDisney experience and it’s my favourite.  Wanna know why?  Read below my friends!

1.  Friendly time zone.  Getting up for a race in Disneyland is easy-peasy if you are from anywhere east of California.  Getting up at 4am is the same as me getting up at 6am to go to work on a regular work day.  I woke up and was essentially ready to go and felt pretty darn good despite it being 4am.  The opposite can be said for WDW…where getting up at 4 am is actually 3am for me…which means I feel like crap.

2. Location. Location. Location.  Disneyland has this in spades.  I can get up for the race and literally stroll out the front door of my hotel and within minutes I am at the start line.  No shuttles, no parking, no line ups.  Plus, the close proximity means I get to sleep that much more and it is even quicker to get back to have a shower and food post race.

3. The route.  It is pretty much flat which is a great bonus and adds to your chances of PRing.  It also has you running the parks for the first 5-6 miles and around mile 9, when you need a boost, you get to run through L.A. Angles baseball park.  It’s not full on Disney like a race at WDW, simply because they are on City of Anaheim property rather that Disney, but I find that it makes it feel more like a road race, which I think is fun and adds a bit of challenge to it.  Plus there are less ramps/free way style roads to run at DHM.


30th birthday PR at the DHM! WOO! Could I look any sassier?

4.  It’s a smaller race.  It is significantly smaller than the WDW races.  WDW Half Marathon for 2014 had 20, 282 finishers, whereas the Disneyland Half in 2013 had 15,872 finishers.  Those extra 5,000 finishers matter in terms of room to manoeuver on the course.

5.  If you decide to do the Dumbo Double Dare, the 10K route is exclusively through both California Adventure and Disneyland!  It’s the most perfect route for a 10K ever.  🙂

Since I am not there to run this year, I wish all of those running the best of luck this weekend!  Be safe, stay cool and run like the wind!

Much Love,

~Princess Lisa



6 thoughts on “Friday Five – Best things about Disneyland Half Marathon

  1. I agree (but somewhat disagree) with this post! Although, technically W&D is my favorite, DL half is a close second. I didn’t get to enjoy the time change because I was coming from Hawaii (end of the honeymoon) so it was still early for me…but LOVED the walking to the corrals! I stayed in my bed until the last second possible and didn’t have to worry about missing the last bus! And unlike the 10K routs (which is without a doubt the best 10K route EVER) we were done with the parks by mile 3-3.5 in the half, not 5-6. I remember thinking/wishing we were in the parks longer, after all, we had JUST done it the day before…Sorry. That’s my ONLY complaint about the DL race. I would have liked more park time. Whether in the beginning, or have us run through 1 park at the start and then the other at the end, I just wanted more miles in the park. (That extra park time makes a BIG difference to slow pokes like me). Sorry, didn’t mean for this comment to turn out so long 😦

    • I didn’t ever notice it was that short of a time in the parks. I thought it was longer than 3-3.5 miles. I would be interested to see how much “park time” there is in WDW races. It felt like there was a lot of highway running there to me, but with more disney-fied distractions because it was Disney property.

      I think they may cut out the time in the parks for the half so they aren’t repetitive and because there are double the runners, likely running a slower pace, so they need folks in and out quicker, thus less distance covered in the park. Thoughts?

      • I don’t think the WDW races have more park time per se, but it’s spread out over the course of the race. The main reason I had the issue with the 3 miles and done is because you don’t have anything else Disney for 10 miles. I could hand that better if after 10 miles I got to run through a park again, something to motivate me or give me a pick me up…does that make sense?

        I don’t know that they care about the repetitiveness of the course. I mean, in WDW, the 5K is identical to the end of the 10K…and the WDW half overlaps with part of the marathon course. Maybe it has to do with the crowding, or maybe they don’t want to cause issues with the park opening on time.

        Point is, I do love the race. 2nd fastest race ever (and a Disney PR!) and I can’t wait to do it again next year (when you should totally do it too btw!)

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